If you find that your bowling ball is too heavy and you’re struggling to control and throw it down the lane with accuracy, you may be wondering if you can make it lighter. The good news is that it’s possible to make a bowling ball lighter by using one of two methods – deepening the finger holes or creating balance holes.

Deepen the Finger Holes (Get your Bowling Ball Drilled)

I would recommend having a professional ball driller handle this, as they have specialized drill bits that can widen and deepen the holes without compromising the ball’s structural integrity. By redistributing the weight towards the finger holes and away from the core of the ball, this method can shave off a few ounces and result in a slightly lighter feel.

Just keep in mind that the USBC regulations allow a maximum of five finger holes on a bowling ball, and each hole must be used during play. So, before you start drilling away, make sure you’re not exceeding the allowed number of holes. 

Also, deepening the finger holes too much can even cause the ball to crack, so it’s important to consult a professional driller to ensure that the drilling is done safely and nothing bad happens to the ball.

Though you may not see a drastic change in weight using this method.

Create Weight Holes

Another way could be to create balance holes, commonly known as weight holes. These holes are drilled into the ball to change its balance point and distribution of weight. By drilling these holes, a good portion of the weight can be removed from the ball without affecting its durability. 

However, Adding balance holes to your bowling ball might not be a suitable option for you if you are a professional bowler or participate in tournaments. This is because, as of August 1, 2020, the USBC has prohibited the use of balance holes in bowling balls during competitions. If you have a bowling ball with balance holes that you previously used in competitions, you must have them plugged by this date to make them compliant with tournament rules.

Why Does Bowling Ball Weight Matter?


Bowling ball weight matters because it can affect your performance in many ways. Heavier balls can create more power and hook potential, but they are harder to control thus increasing the chances of hitting gutters, especially for bowlers who are not that physically fit.

Lighter balls, on the other hand, can are easier to control, have faster ball speed, and reduces the risk of injury. Since you’ve more control over lighter balls, it becomes easier for you to aim and throw the ball in the right direction. 

Thus if your ball is too heavy for you, then you should consider removing some of its weight with the help of the methods mentioned above.

And so Choosing the right bowling ball weight becomes super important for achieving the best performance, in fact, I’ve got the inside scoop on how to do just that. My recent article breaks down everything you need to know to choose the right bowling ball weight for you. I’ve dived deep into the factors you need to consider when selecting a ball weight, including your strength, size, and skill level. I’ve shared a secret formula as well! So, make sure you check that out!

How much weight can you drill out of a bowling ball?

If you’re thinking of drilling holes in your bowling ball, you may be wondering how much weight you can actually remove. The answer depends on several factors, including the size and material of the ball, as well as the drilling pattern used.

In general, the amount of weight that can be drilled out of a bowling ball varies from ball to ball. According to guidelines released by the USBC for maximum weight removal from a ball, only 3 ounces for balls weighing 10 pounds or less, and 5 ounces for bowling balls weighing more than 10 pounds are allowed and legal. 

It’s important to note that drilling too much weight out of the ball can even negatively affect its performance, as it can change the ball’s core dynamics and balance. Secondly, drilling too much can even crack the ball or break it apart.

To ensure that you don’t exceed the USBC weight loss limits and maintain the ball’s performance, it’s important to have the ball drilled by a professional only who has experience and expertise in ball drilling. A skilled ball driller can help you find the optimal drilling pattern and depth to get the desired weight adjustment while preserving the ball’s overall performance and durability.

Is it Legal to Remove Weight From a Bowling Ball?

Removing weight from a bowling ball is legal as long as it falls within the weight loss limits set by the USBC. The limits are three ounces for balls weighing 10 pounds or less and five ounces for balls weighing more than 10 pounds, this ensures the ball’s structural integrity and safety for competition. 

USBC also regulates the maximum weight and size of a bowling ball, as well as the placement and number of finger holes. Any modifications or changes to the ball must be made within these regulations to avoid penalties or disqualification from the official competitions.

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